Solemn Ceremony at Notre Dame Health & Rehabilitation Center Marks 9/11 Anniversary

In a solemn outdoor ceremony held on Saturday morning, September 9th on the beautiful grounds of Notre Dame Health & Rehabilitation Center in Norwalk, members of Knights of Columbus Bishop Fenwick 4th Degree Assembly (including members of Council 14360-Norwalk) were joined by their families as well as residents and staff of Notre Dame at a special Mass in remembrance of those who lost their lives sixteen years ago on September 11, 2001.

“It is nice to take time to honor those we lost on that day,” said George Ribellino, Faithful Navigator of Assembly 100. “This is the 3rd year of having the Memorial Mass and picnic with the residents of Notre Dame and we are so appreciative of the hospitality of Sister Lucie and the staff of Notre Dame,”  Ribellino went on to say.

On a bright sunny morning, residents and patients Notre Dame, along with staff, volunteers, a Knights Color Guard formed a procession across the Notre Dame grounds to the flag pole for the blessing of a brand new American Flag donated by Assembly 100.

Father Reggie Norman, Pastor of Our Lady of Fatima parish (Wilton) and Chaplain of Knights of Columbus Assembly 100, was the celebrant of the Mass.  Special American flags bearing the names of 9/11 victims were part of the ceremony as well.

Father Reggie in his homily about the 9-11 Anniversary said, “9/11 is a day to remember: remember who we are and what we are about. It was not a time of selfishness but a time of togetherness. Let us return to the time where we work and pray for each other.

The Mass was coordinated by Notre Dame’s Sister Lucie Monast, SSTV, with assistance from Assembly 100 and members of Catholic Daughters, Court St. Matthew #2640. Following the Mass, a special picnic was held for all attendees in which the Knights helped serve

“It was truly a special and memorable morning for all”, said Sister Lucie Monast

Notre Dame Health and Rehabilitation Center is a 60-bed residence, including 6 private rooms, and located on five landscaped acres in Norwalk, CT, is operated under the loving sponsorship of The Sisters of Saint Thomas of Villanova. Their goal is to optimize the quality of life for the chronically ill and convalescent elderly.  Notre Dame has been awarded 5 stars, the highest ranking from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. It has been named by US News & World Report as one of the Best Nursing Homes in CT.   For more information go to ndhrehab.org.

Knights of Columbus Bishop Fenwick Assembly 100 was chartered in Norwalk, CT since 1914.  The Fourth Degree is the outgrowth and culmination of the desire of the Members to manifest their love for country and pride in their Catholic American heritage. In 1882, the Reverend Michael J. McGivney had founded the Knights of Columbus to provide mutual aid and assistance to its members and their families. At that time the Order had only three Degrees exemplifying the principles of Charity, Unity and Fraternity. In compliance with the wishes of the body as a whole, the national board of directors met in August 1899 and approved the addition of a Fourth Degree to the work of the Knights of Columbus. The new ritual was adopted on the 9th of December and went into effect in 1900 with its primary purpose to foster the spirit of patriotism through the demonstration of one’s love for its country and by responsible citizenship. It is the highest Degree in the Knights of Columbus, giving a greater knowledge and appreciation for our Catholic heritage.  For more information, go to Assembly100.org.

 

 

 

 

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Two Local Knights of Columbus Councils make donation to Good Counsel Malta House of CT

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Two Fairfield County Knights of Columbus Councils partnered for a 2nd year to hold a Golf Tournament for Charity called the Sword & Shield Golf Classic.  Under the leadership of Co-Chairs George Ribellino of Norwalk Council 14360 from St. Matthew and Greg Matera of Fairfield Council 11077 from Our Lady of Assumption, the golf tournament was a rousing success for a 2nd year raising funds for several organizations including Good Counsel Malta House of CT –which is a home to feed and shelter women from all backgrounds eager to keep their unborn children.

On September 13th, members of both councils arrived at Malta House joining the residents and Board for  Mass and Dinner before presenting checks totaling $2000 from a portion of the proceeds from the late spring outing.  “To be able to do good for those in your community gives such a level of satisfaction, it really can’t be described,” said Golf Finance Chair and current Deputy Grand Knight from Council 14360, Anthony Armentano while attending this Donation Ceremony.  Armentano went on to say that “Malta House does so much good and we are honored to help where we can.   Co-Chair Matera echoed Armentano’s sentiment, “We are proud that the Knights of Columbus is able to support the needs of Malta house and their residents.”

Both Knights councils have worked with Malta House over the years by providing diapers, wipes, formula and supplying man hours to paint and make repairs at the house.  “I have worked with Malta House since joining my Knight council in 2009.  I admire the work that the staff and board do to help the mothers and children at Malta House.  We were so honored to present a check from the proceeds of the golf tournament to Good Counsel Malta House of CT,” said Tournament Co-Chair George Ribellino, Jr.

“Malta House is so very blessed to have the support of the Knights of Columbus Council 14360 in Norwalk and Council 11077 in Fairfield.  Not only do the Knights raise funds that allow us to provide a safe home and support services to young women and babies who have nowhere else to turn, they also work behind the scenes with the upkeep of our home.   We look forward to participating in next year’s Sword & Shield Golf Classic,” said Kim Petrone, Chair of Malta House.

The vision for Malta House came almost 20 years ago when a young father learned that there was “no room at the inn” for many pregnant women in Fairfield County, who chose life for their unborn. These vulnerable young families often found themselves living on the street or in sub-standard conditions.

It was just announced this week that Malta House formed a collaboration with Good Counsel which runs maternity homes in the tri-state area and beyond.  “Linked with Good Counsel’s network and resources, we’ll be able to provide even greater access to health services, education, job skills and more for expectant and parenting mothers,” Petrone said. “Good Counsel also has the ability to provide care for women with substance abuse and mental health disorders, ensuring that no woman who seeks our help will ever have to be turned away. This capability is a win-win for Connecticut and our home in support of human dignity and family stability.”

The Third Annual Sword & Shield Charity Golf Classic will be held on June 11, 2018 at Brownson Country Club in Shelton, CT.  Details will follow at saintmatthewknights.com.

Founded in 1882 by Father McGivney in New Haven, Conn., the Knights of Columbus has grown to nearly 2 million members with charity as its primary mission. Last year, Knights donated $177.5 million and more than 75 million hours of service to charitable causes.

 

Knights Feeding the Youth

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Three local Knights of Columbus Councils and Bishop Fenwick 4th Degree Assembly provide BBQ lunch for the Diocesan “Fan the Fire” Youth Rally

On Saturday, August 19, 2017, around 400 youth from the parishes in the Diocese of Bridgeport attended the Fan the Fire Youth Rally at St. Joseph’s High School in Trumbull.  Fan the Fire® is a one day event designed to reach out to teens and help them to either deepen their relationship with Christ or discover it for the first time. The day consisted of a dynamic host, high-quality music, and talented local, regional and national Catholic youth speakers, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, confessions, contemporary Mass, concert, lunch and dinner.

Father Reggie Norman, Pastor for Our Lady of Fatima Church and Chaplain of Knights of Columbus Bishop Fenwick 4th Degree Assembly 100, reached out to Assembly 100 Faithful Navigator George Ribellino to see if the Assembly and Knights councils that make up the Assembly would be interested in sponsoring and hosting lunch for the youth.  Ribellino said, “When Father Reggie mentioned this to me and what the youth rally was about, I said let me see what I can do!”   Ribelllino brought this up to the 4th Degree Assembly and everyone jumped on board.

The lunch was sponsored by Knights of Columbus Bishop Fenwick 4th Degree Assembly No. 100 along with Norwalk councils St. Matthew #14360, Thomas J. Finn Council #46 and Wilton Our Lady of Fatima #12698.  The menus consisted of hot dogs, hamburger, chips, water and lemonade.  Since there was a tight schedule, the Knights had to get everyone fed within an hour.  Everyone was served within 20-25 minutes.

“I was so proud to see Brother Knights come together to plan and execute a great meal for our youth, but we all got more joy seeing the youth of our diocese really enjoy a day of getting closer to Christ,” said Ribellino.

The leftover food was donated to the St. Joseph’s High School Football team, which was having summer scrimmages.

Knights of Council 14360 Host FCA Child and Family Development Program Summer Outing at Fodor Farm

For nine of the ten years that Knights of Columbus St. Matthew Council #14360 has been in existence, they have assisted or sponsored various events for the Family & Children’s Agency (FCA) in Norwalk. This has included the Agency’s annual Foster Care picnic and outings to Bridgeport Bluefish games as well as a day of painting with teens and seniors. This year, the council donated funds from various fundraisers to sponsor and take part in the FCA Child & Family Development Summer outing on August 10, 2017 at Fodor Farm in Norwalk

Mayx Holmes, FCA Manager of Community Engagement, spoke about how the St. Matthew Knights have partnered with FCA to make a difference in the Norwalk community for many years.

“Their dedication to helping the community through service and charity has been evident over the past nine years.  Each year, the Knights want to address the project with the most need, and this year they provided a wonderful summer event for FCA families. This event was a great way to bring families together to find support, reduce isolation and celebrate their accomplishments in FCA’s programs,” said Holmes.

The weather was perfect for the day’s events, which included arts and crafts, a petting zoo, mud and face painting, a tasty lunch, and of course ice cream, which was donated by Saugatuck Sweets of Westport and Fairfield.  The children and the parents really enjoyed the outing as it was a chance for all the families to bond with each other and the staff at the FCA.  Some of the St. Matthew Knights and a few of their family members ran the grill and helped FCA staff with preparing the salad and cutting up watermelon for the families.   In addition, the Knights and their families assisted with directing traffic in the parking lot, and helped run the raffle and arts and crafts tables.

“The FCA does a great job in supporting those of all ages from young children to seniors.  It has been a joy to work with the great staff at FCA over the last 9 years and we look forward to many years to come,” said Past Grand Knight and council liaison to the FCA, George Ribellino, Jr.

FCA’s Child & Family Development programs provides positive parent support and programs to families and their young children. These program focuses on the critical early years of a child’s life, birth to age 5, to support strong foundations for future success. FCA’s staff educate and equip new and growing families with resources that help them build a strong family foundations.

These programs are designed to work with at-risk families to prevent abuse and neglect in the home.  Ribellino went on to say, “This is our first year working with the folks from the Child & Family Development program and we are looking forward to sponsoring and assisting with next year’s event”

FCA is a nonprofit organization that offers services to all ages, from children to seniors, to build strength and help provide their needs. FCA serves Fairfield County and the surrounding areas. For more information, go to FamilyandChildrensAgency.org.

Gala Celebrating K of C Council 14360’s 10th Anniversary Set for October 21

Come help us celebrate our Council’s 10 years of service to St. Matthew Parish and the Greater Norwalk Community!

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All are welcome at a special gala 10th Anniversary dinner to be held at the beautiful Water’s Edge at Giovanni’s in Darien. The dinner will be held on Saturday, October 21, 2017 at 6:00 p.m, and it promises to be a memorable evening filled with music and delicious dining!

To reserve your spot right now with a credit card, just click on the link below:

https://squareup.com/store/kofc14360

Or, you may click on the link below to access a form that can be printed out and mailed in along with your check:

10TH ANNIVERSARY RESERVATION FORM

If you or your company is interested in helping support this event via an advertisement in the gala program that will be distributed that evening, please click on the link below for further details:

Gala Advertisement Form

For more information, please do not hesitate to call Past Grand Knight Mike Colaluca at 203-846-3571 or PGK George Ribellino at 203-856-7101!

This will be a great night with an awesome meal! We hope to see you there on October 21!

 

 

St. Matthew Knights of Columbus Celebrate 10 Years as a Council

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Knights of Columbus St. Matthew Council 14360 celebrates 10 years of service to Parish and Greater Norwalk community

Knights of Columbus St. Matthew Council No. 14360 became Norwalk’s third Knights of Columbus council back on July 25, 2007.  It was the first time in a century that a new council in Norwalk had been founded.  Persistence paid off when parishioner and first Grand Knight Gerry Grippe lobbied for many years to start a council at St. Matthew Church.  Grippe wanted to start the council to assist Pastor Msgr. Walter Orlowski with various parish projects as well as outreach in the local community.  Msgr. Walter gave the green light to start the process of forming a new council with the CT State Knights of Columbus in March 2007.

The council recently celebrated its 10th Anniversary with a Mass and a special presentation from Senator Bob Duff of a State of Connecticut General Assembly citation.  The Mass took place in a packed St. Matthew Church Chapel, where the council was formed back in 2007.

Father Tomi Thomas thanked the council for their service and mentioned that the Knights of Columbus’ four core principles of Charity, Unity, Fraternity and Patriotism are rooted in the Gospel.   He left everyone with one final thought: “We are here to serve, not to be served.”

Senator Duff praised the council for their service to St. Matthew Parish and the local community.  Senator Duff said, “I see the Knights at various civic events such as the American Legion Veteran of the Month, Flag placing ceremony, Memorial Day Parade and assisting local organizations.  Their presence adds to each of these events.”

The council started with around 30 members, made up of new members, transfers and those who were re-activating a membership.  Currently, the council membership totals 100 members.  In the 10 years since it was founded, the council has done many projects in the parish, including church/chapel cleanings, youth events and fundraiser dinners.  In addition, the council has donated funds and manpower to help Malta House (Norwalk), Family & Children’s Agency of Norwalk, All Saints Catholic School and Notre Health & Rehabilitation Center.

Council 14360 has won the Order’s highest honor of Star Council 4 times in its 10 year history.  Other accomplishments include donating more than $110,000 to various parish and community organizations, collecting over 20,000 pounds of food for the St. Matthew Food pantry, and remodeling the chapel from pews to painting at the Notre Dame Health and Rehabilitation Convent Chapel.

The council has had 4 Grand Knights: Gerry Grippe (2007-2010), Michael Colaluca (2010-2013), George Ribellino, Jr. (2013-2016) and current Grand Knight Scott J. Criscuolo.

“I am very proud to be part of a wonderful group of Catholic men, men who follow their faith in charity, unity, fraternity and patriotism. It is the backbone of our order and of being a strong Catholic. I look forward to the next 10 years of serving,” said Grand Knight Scott Criscuolo.

The council will also celebrate the 10th Anniversary with a Gala on Saturday, October 21, 2017 at Waters Edge at Giovanni’s in Darien.  There will be a great sit down dinner with a beer/wine open bar.  For more info go to at https://squareup.com/store/kofc14360

With more than 1.8 million members, the Knights of Columbus is the world’s largest Catholic lay organization. It provides members and their families with volunteer opportunities in service to the Catholic Church, the community, families, and young people. In 2016 the Knights of Columbus at all levels of the organization raised and distributed over $177 million to charity and rendered 75 million hours of volunteer service.

The anniversary Mass was covered by several local media outlets. Click on the links below to read more.

http://norwalk.dailyvoice.com/neighbors/st-matthew-knights-of-columbus-celebrate-10-years-in-norwalk/717910/

https://www.bridgeportdiocese.org/knights-celebrates-10-years-service-parish-greater-norwalk-community/

Photo credit: Anna Mastrolillo

Annual Family Communion Breakfast a Memorable Event For All

 

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On Sunday, June 4, 2017, Pentecost Sunday, the Knights of Council 14360 (St. Matthew Church, Norwalk) held their annual Family Communion Breakfast following the 9:00 a.m. Mass.  This year’s featured speaker was Sister Sally Norcross, who in recent years has provided so much invaluable guidance and assistance to the people of St. Matthew as its Pastoral Minister.

Sister Sally, a longtime educator and administrator in local Catholic schools, spoke about the spiritual journey that has led her to St. Matthew and her current position. She shared inspiring stories and passed along many wise words to attendees, encouraging them to “breathe in peace… and exhale anxiety,” in their hectic daily lives.

In addition, Chancellor Chris O’Connor presented young artist Molly O’Sullivan with her award for recently winning the Knights of Columbus’ Keep Christ in Christmas poster contest in her age group.

A very special thanks to Brother Ron Miller for once again doing an outstanding job of chairing this year’s Communion Breakfast. Thanks also to Deputy Grand Knight Anthony Armentano for all of his efforts in helping put the breakfast together, as well as to the generous sponsors who donated raffle prizes.

Photo credit:  Nona Rudd